Monday, March 31, 2008

Spin Night 2NITE!

Although I have no idea what to take with me. Sure, I can take spinning, but it's hard when it's raining, which at the moment it's NOT raining HERE, but it probably WILL BE soon.


For the nth time.

Because it's been storming all day, more ON than OFF.

Wool and rain do not smell good.

So I'm thinking maybe some socks?

I bought this great pattern online this morning...I'm hoping that the attachment comes through okay. If not, I'll just email it to the "other" email address, but it looks like it downloaded just fine.

Also found a pattern for a bag that I am wanting to make...Intricate Stag Bag on Knitting Daily. It's another fair isle endeavor--very nice. I'm thinking I can make it out of some of my handspun--both the grey and the white, and have it turn out really spectacular!

But not tonight, I've wondered if I should take my fair isle sweater with me. It's a lot of yarn to cart around, though, and I prefer to take smaller items to spin night.

So I'm at a loss. I don't really know what I should take!!!

So, instead, for now, will table the effort, and read email--perhaps something will come of that?

Sunday, March 30, 2008

The New Drum

As promised! Pretty nice isn't it? Ray hasn't loaded it with any labels or anything yet, so the finish is really pristine. He paid a fair dollar for it too--way more than I would have given for it, but then, he understands these things more than I do.

Here's another drum that he's made into a replica for the 42nd Highlander's and their (now defunct) regiment from the Detroit/Pontiac area....
And if you're interested in either of the drums, please contact my friend Ray at

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Pictures for the Rope Tension Drum

Will be posted on Sunday.

In the meantime, an update.
I bought more yarn.
Silly me, like I need more yarn!

But this was just too pretty to let get away.

Aurora by Elegant Yarns. Lovely stuff. I'm going to use it for the Dragon Shawl (show in the margin)'s the actual stuff. Isn't it beautiful? I managed to pick up 8 skeins of this stuff...more than enough to make the shawl. So pretty. I can't wait to start it, but I'll have to hold off for at least another month, as that's how long it will take me to finish the fair isle Sweater.

I also got a book on knitted pineapples. This is going to help me to do the pineapples on the sleeves for the Entrelac Sweater (also posted to the right margin). I may have this one done sometime in May, while I work on the Dragon shawl.

I also want to get back to working on the Princess Shawl, although that's going to take a BUNCH of concentration! Ravelry has been really good about making me finish things, but it's also been a big drain on my credit card, and that's simply got to stop. I should also stop driving past the LYS--since I can't help myself from stopping "just to look", and end up coming out with more stash.

Does anyone else have this affliction?

The sheep are fed, the hubby's fed, the dog and cats have been fed, and I've been fed, although I think I will make a potato in an hour or so.

For now, back to knitting.

Pokits on the Svetter

I'm going to have to get a picture when the sun comes out, because it's only 5:30am, and the only light on in the house is coming from my puter...but I got the pockets on my fair isle sweater, AND I got the washcloth done from the Have a Heart Ensemble.

I have been just the busy bee.

Lately, though, my little cyst in my wrist is giving me fits. Hey--that rhymes!

It hurts a bit, and cotton yarn tends to exacerbate it, so I think I'm going to put off finishing the i-cord for the back scrubber for now and work on the fair isle today.

First, however, I want to tell you about this dream I had last night, that really spooked me.

I have these recurring dreams sometimes--always about this or that college that I'm attending, where I can't seem to find the room where I'm supposed to be for my next class. I'm horribly lost, and no one else is able to help me to find the place I need to go.

I finally catch up to this Laura Ingels wannabe who is also looking for a class, and since she knows where the office to this school is, she heads right for it. I follow, thinking that perhaps I can find my classroom there as well.

Well, we get to the office, and all the classes an their respective rooms are written on flash cards and set up high on a shelf where you can only see just a bit of them, but I see my room is 749. Ms. Ingels is out of sight, dashed off in another direction to her class. Her books strapped down and dragging behind her on the floor.

So I set off to the "wing" where I believe 749 is, and end up in the wrong wing, turn around, go back, and slip into another wing--to find a huge spacious room filled with everything from soup to nuts. The very back is an automotive garage (not my class), but on my way back out I finally take stock of what I didn't see on the way in! There's a young man doing some sort of surgery on someone on a gurney (well, it might have been a cadaver), and then a young guy in a wheelchair, who didn't seem to belong in a wheelchair. He didn't get up, but I sat in his lap (something I wouldn't do to someone in a wheelchair). I'm not sure if I did that of my own volition or if I was pushed, fell or if he pulled me down---but there you go. Suddenly, I'm in his lap.

Now this guy isn't unattractive--clearly he's a geek--but he asks what I'm doing with this silly grin on his face--and I tell him I'm lost and can't find my class. So he asks me what room is it and what class. I tell him the class name (but now can't remember the name of the class I was looking for--probably something in history, since I don't like it, and wouldn't mind getting lost and in some guy's lap because of it) and the room number.

He says, no--that class is in 249, And when I start to disagree with him over it he tells me

"Look, I'm a seventeen year old know it all smart ass. I know what I'm talking about."

And then I woke up.

The only thing that's really clear is his face and hair. He had a somewhat angular face, while still being somewhat oval shaped, dark brown hair that was cut in a too-short pageboy with lots of body near the ears, piercing yet laughing eyes, and braces on his teeth--not the simple ones with the rubberbands either--these had wires sticking out of his mouth that attached to a wire that went around the back of his head--he resembled the younger Michael Kelso on "That 70's Show". But to the eye, he was far more intelligent than our younger Michael Kelso. I took him immediately for a genius the likes of Douglas Howser--but he was not a doctor. He acted more like he was a teacher. But I didn't have time to reason it out.

Beyond that, what's a 50 year old lady doing sitting in the lap of a 17 year old young man???

After I woke up, I tried to figure out what it all meant. Do we all do that or am I alone in this pursuit?

I wondered if the dream was something of the past--say a "lifted veil", that showed me a glimpse of the past of my family tree. Or was it something of the future, where my son finally has his own son who grows up to be a genius! Or was it something of MY future--in the "next life" as it were, where I am young again and flirting with a 17 year old fellow?

The world may never know.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Still no glasses!

I still haven't found my glasses.

I suppose it's okay. I don't need them for my shower.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Sore Stiff

I slept on my hand funky the other day, and my wrist hasn't stopped hurting me.

The rest of my body is sore, too, and I can't find my glasses.

I am falling apart at the seams...

Gee, you think?

No knitting for me until I find my glasses! Ouch!

I also purchased some stitch holders some time ago. Do you think that I can find them tonight? Not a chance.

Maybe it's just time to go to bed. We're supposed to get some really bad weather tonight and tomorrow. It's been such a beautiful day, I'm hoping that the weatherman is wrong...but I'll check anyway.


Well, for the first time since having internet, I watched a youtube video, without too much interruption. I watched Jeff Dunham and Peanut. Jeff Dunham is probably the funniest ventriloquist I have ever seen, and I like how he does what he does. He's very irreverent, and sometimes his jokes are a bit colorful--but they aren't bawdy or lewd--and the "f" word isn't coming out of his mouth every other syllable. This marks him as totally acceptable for almost everybody but the Sunday night dinner with the pastor and his wife.

Peanut is a Muppet-style creation. Big red lips, pink (or purple, I guess) body, with a peanut shaped leather area on his belly so he looks somewhat like some sort of monkey derivative, but the green tuft of hair on top of his head, and wearing one tennis shoe--well, that sort of gives him away as being a lot more humanized than any ordinary monkey. Peanut is a fun-loving, teasing, happy go lucky, loves to laugh sort of guy. He's the funny-man to Jeff's straight man.

Jeff is an attractive young man of somewhere in his 40's. He's got a retinue of several ventriloquist puppets--Peanut is joined by Walter, Achmed the dead terrorist, Jose Jalepeno on a stick, Walter and a few others. Each one has his own personality and "sound". None of them sound like Jeff himself, which makes you think he should be working for Warner Brothers the way that Mel Brooks created Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Porkie Pig and hundreds of others.
I'm sure there are lots of people out there who are just as vocally talented--the guy on Police Academy for one, who had a repertoire of hundreds--perhaps thousands--of different sounds. Jeff is married and I believe has two children--so somewhere in his life, he must have some sense of normalcy, but having seen him on dvd, it's a little hard to imagine having a normal life with this guy. Married to me, I'd have died in the first week--from laughter.

Back to knitting...
Still working on the fair isle sweater. I'm doing the pockets now and I have to get some special holders to put the sweater's pocket opening on, then I can "knit in" the pocket facing about 14 stitches from the center front. From there, it's full steam ahead to the underarm.

At the office, I'm working on a facecloth from the Have A Heart Ensemble. I finished the back scrubber, I just have to knit on the handles. I purchased some bone rings, and then realized that I really didn't make the back scrubber long enough to put fingers into the rings and be able to hold it behind you. So I will make the I-cord loops. It will bend in half, unfortunately, but them's the breaks. Perhaps I can have it in the room "just for show", and make another for use down the road. Not a lot of sense in that, but just trying to think out of the box.

This will be my next project. A double knit hat. I'll be learning the technique at Threadbear in Lansing next month.

Does anybody know where I put my pattern for I Love Gansey Socks?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

New Broadband!

I am seriously tired of my isp, so I thought I would finally get broadband.

I'm on it now, and it's a little strange. I'm not sure what to think. I suppose it's not much different. But now, I have to change my email address on everything.

THAT'S a big pain. Amazon, Paypal, Ebay, Classmates and a raft of other sites have my voyager address. All that's going to change. And since I use a different email client, I'm not sure how to configure it to pick up email from yahoo.

I guess you have to sign up for a full year to get email through Eudora on Yahoo, by signing up for the plus service. This is a kink...but I finally got it to work.

Now I have to change all my lists...hoy! That's going to take a while. Boy, was I wrong. There's a button at the bottom to change everything on the list to a default. Now I just have to wait for the mail to load up on yahoo.

Unfortunately, I haven't quite figured out how to SEND mail yet. What a learning curve!

I think I'm going to have to delete the Dominant personality in Eudora to "get rid" of Voyager completely, and that's exactly what had to be done.

I updated the dominant personality to the yahoo servers, and now all works flawlessly.

Now to tell all the websites...Paypal, Ebay and Amazon! Almost done!

The good thing about changing your email address every so often is that you break the link for all those spammers out there. Change your email, and they "lose" you in the the process, and for a while, the mail will be returned to sender, and they take you off the register. You are free until you click on a link on the web that screws you. That's what happened to me the last time, and it was a real PITA. It took forever to teach my email client how to filter those messages into the junk, but filter them was possible, and eventually, I was getting pretty much standard email in my inbox--spam went directly to the junk folder, which I reviewed, undeleted those messages I wanted, and then deleted everything else.

Oh, other blogs--rss feeds...Must renew with new email address. Other than that, I think I'm prepared. Hope everyone had a nice Easter, and that the bunny brought lots of goodies to you! Mine brought salty snacks. My favorite.

Monday, March 24, 2008

What is the world Coming to?

I work in an office with lots of file folders. This generates a lot of filing, as files are pulled for various reasons for review, and then returned.

Understanding that, one would think that one of the requisites for having a job that entailed a large amount of filing would be that the person could, without much thought, really, recite, know and determine at a glance, the alphabet.

It surprises me sometimes, when I walk into the file room to find Yo's in the middle of the Wo's. Or that Mathews is not the same at Matthews, and that hypenated names come AFTER unhyphenated names---so Jones comes before Jones-Jones which comes before Jones-Smith.

The standard rules about filing seem to disappear in this room. It's no wonder nobody can find the file they want.

So tell me, do they not teach the alphabet in school anymore?

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Flint Fling

Well, Ray and I traveled to Flint to practice with their Grade 5 band.

We worked on their parade 3/4--not sure why we spent lots of time on it, since we aren't going to do parades. I think that their Instructor was just "testing" us to see whether we'd be able to "get it", rather than immediately giving us the competition medley, with the idea that we'd be in the May competition at Alma.

In fact, he asked me to play in the massed bands with them--Ray can't, since he's historian and has been for years and years.

Then they got it together into a circle.

It was a low ceiling, and my ears are still ringing, but Flint's going to be the new Windsor Police. I can see it a freaking tidal wave.

I wish I'd taken a camera and my DVR. I can't believe that I didn't take my DVR!! Of course, it's in my purse, and I prefer to travel light (read that "no luggage at all"), and have taken to not carrying a purse whenever possible. I just tuck my driver's license in one pocket, my ATM card in another, and I'm off to the races! I can go anywhere this way, and it's become my preferred method of travel! HA!

So no DVR, and no sound bite of what they sound like. Trust me when I say, that they are freaking amazing. And that's just their grade 5 band! These are the ones who didn't make the cut for the Grade 4 band (the "better" sound, more "together", "tight", but not recording artists by a long shot) if anybody cares, the Grade 5 band (to my ears anyway) are seriously good enough for Grade 4, and if the Grade 4 personnel is ANY better, then they're seriously good enough to take Grade 3 HANDILY.

It's sort of exciting to be on top of a tidal wave with no surf board.

It's a completely different feel from the Grand Rapids pipe band. The bunch at Flint are having some serious fun. And the sound is...well...loud, but the excitement is palpable.

Ray and I came in early, and ran into the pipe major (don't worry, he didn't get hurt too badly), and we were talking about the location for the practice, which overlooks a fast running creek, due to all the melt we've had lately (don't look now, but there's about 4 inches of snow on the ground from last night's winter storm)...and he said

"I think it will be nice in the summer, we can come outside and play on this rise over here."

To which I replied "Is there a creek down there?" and he said yes. So I of course had to say it "That's cool, because pipes sound really good over water."

Then thought a bit, and not missing a beat "They sound good UNDER water, too". And laughed at my own joke.

I know. Lame. But I get nervous in new situations like this, but the Pipe Major laughed too, so all was not lost.

The Band Manager came in shortly after and took our names etc. I got the impression that they aren't turning ANYBODY (read that "any bodies") away.

So next Thursday, I'll remember to drop my DVR in my pocket, and hopefully they'll give us the medley next time. Of course, hopefully, we can get over there next Thursday, considering how much snow is on the ground right this moment. I'm going no where if the roads are bad.

With that, I think I'll close and go check out the forecast on the weather website.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Busy Signals

I am sick to death of busy signals.

My husband and I live out in BFE where there is no cable, and DSL is expensive. I'm considering trying Broadband, although the last time I tried Broadband, it was not exactly a "better fit", because reception by Broadband is still a problem since we're at least 5 miles from the nearest cell tower.

But I'm so tired of "dialing in" on dialup and getting busy signals that I can barely stand it.

On a good note, my friend Ray and I traveled to Flint yesterday to check out their Grade 5 band and talk about the Grand Rapids "dismissal", learn some of their stuff (which we spent quite a bit of time on the first part of the 3/4, and the instructor sent it home with us), and listen to their competition set.

I'm telling you--Flint's Grade 5 will be the band to beat this year.

The plan is to put the 3/4 score into my drumming software, and learn it by next Thursday. I don't think that it will be much of a problem. I'd like to get my hands on their competition set--plug that in and play it by Alma--although I've pretty much decided that I'm going to go slow and just take the massed bands performance at Alma, but be ready for competition at some future point.

Ray, however, is having all sorts of trouble. Never having been a corps drummer, he has always played by ear, and adjusts the sticking to suit his hands, which is often quite different than what's on the dotted page. It's got to be frustrating for him, after so many years of drumming to have to really "read" the music and "do" what the music says to do. Now, my son Norm, he could play it without any trouble, because I've taught him how to read the music. He doesn't yet understand when to make a note a tad longer/shorter (as in dot and cut) or how long really a tap lasts (let's face it it's like clapping hands--there is no real "length" to a tap or a clap as there is in a vocal sound, such as laaaaahhhhh, which can go on forever). This has been the biggest drawback in drumming for me, because while I can read if it's supposed to be left/right, WHEN I'm supposed to play that next tap (unless it's a 'no brainer' such as all quarter note singles or paradiddles). Throw in a dotted 16th, and I'm lost. So I depend on what I hear to tell me the "phrasing". Sometimes, my hands will do it, and sometimes they won't.

So it's a learning curve.

Ted Barr, Flint's instructor, has been working with them for the last 4 years or more, and his son before that. Both are drumming teachers. Both are really good at what they do. I'm sure I can shape myself up for Alma massed bands. I might even be able to compete a little later in the year. Stupid moi, I didn't bring my DVR with me. That would have been very helpful. Unfortunately, I'm sure that Ray took the music home and worked on it, and by next Thursday will have taught himself all the wrong stuff.

In the meantime, Easter is coming, and it's getting warmer out--the weatherman says that it's going to snow something furious today, but I think that the wind will blow it further south of us.

The whole thing about joining another band is that it makes me sad about Grand Rapids and it reminds me of the times in Glen Erin--the happier days with Randy before I knew he didn't want me in the band to begin with. I ended the evening with a few tears and a couple final goodbyes before going to bed.

So I'm on my way to work. It's Friday again, and I've got quite a bit of knitting to do. I got Astrid's Kauni Rainbow in the mail this week, and that's slated for a Rainbow Shawl. I have to get that Ravel'd this weekend...a little work on my Fair Isle, and perhaps some work on my Entrelac top! Then, there's Easter at the In-Laws, and back to the office on Monday.

It's been a fun week.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

A day off from Knitting..

I arrived home from work yesterday, simply exhausted. I fell into bed at 7pm and didn't wake up until 2am, but then fell right back to sleep and even hit the snooze twice this morning!

No idea what I'm doing that's sapping my energy, but I didn't do any knitting OR spinning. I suppose it could have been the stress over the house the my hubby was thinking of buying. He did put a bid on it, but the offer didn't fly and someone else swooped in and snatched up the house for more than the seller wanted for it.

I'm feeling so relieved over that issue.

Today, my back is killing me, and I lingered in the shower (the hot, Hot, HOT! shower) for a few extra minutes, trying to steam off the pain. I let the dog out, fed and watered all the animals, read a couple of emails and looked at Amazon and Ebay. Then head for work.

I'm still sore. I know, I know. Complain, complain.

If I survive the day, I'll go home and knit. That should help.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Weekend--and How Weird is That?

On Saturday, my friend Ray and I went to the Living History Show in Kalamazoo, Michigan. This isn't just any show--it's a show for re-enactor groups and is very similar to SCA---(Society of Creative Anachronism). People choose "characters" from the past, and "dress" to the gills to represent that period...I digress...the show is a trade show where re-enactors and skilled tradesmen (and women) can hawk their wares. Some things are truly antique, some are just reproductions, but there were many beautiful things there.

I got my leather and my pewter thistles, and found, of all things, a book on making kilts. Now I haven't looked at it quite yet, because I have been totally busy, and since it's 10pm now on Sunday, and I am about to rest my head, I will have to wait until tomorrow to see if it begins with the weaving process, but I have my doubts. In any case, I am quite sure it contains information in great detail about how the kilt is constructed, and there may be some details about the weaving and how to set up the warp and so on, but until I actually look at it with my jaundiced eye...

But the BIG EVENT was Ray's, as he found another rope tension snare drum this year. This one was in better shape than the one he found last year. The cost was a little pricey, but once he laid eyes on it, he knew that he wanted it, and had I had the money, I would have bought it myself, because it's a very, very nice drum! The sound is good, deep and resonant, and the skin heads are both well hydrated. The rims were in fantastic condition, and the body was not warped! This was indeed a wonderful find, and I can't wait to play it. I'm sure that Ray took it home and got out his sticks the moment he got it inside the door. I will lay money on the fact that he may not have even taken the time to take off his coat!

After the show, Ray wanted to take me to Bennigan's for supper--to celebrate St. Pat's day, but I was tired, and hungry, and had no desire to wait another hour before eating, so instead, we opted for our regular stop off at the Galesburg McDonald's.

Now, Galesburg is where my ex-husband lives, but in the 20 or so odd years that I've gone to this McDonald's, I have never seen him there.

Until this time.

When I came out of the ladies...there he was, sitting in one of the booths, taking with Ray. I couldn't believe my eyes, and of course, there he is with someone who turns out to be his EX-Wife #2 (not his wife, who apparently was working at the time), and several teenage step-children. Hmmm...this was "weird", because he introduces me as "Tenna", but introduces her as his ex-wife.

I guess he doesn't consider me his ex-wife? I digress...

My first thought is "wow, I feel like I'm suddenly part of an ex-wives CLUB"! For sure, I shot that idea out of my head. The whole "vibe" was something out of the Twilight Zone.

So to make conversation, I asked him how his back was faring.

And he got defensive (as usual) and demands to know how I found out about his BACK.


So then he starts in with this diatribe and tripe about how he was never going to have to work another day in his life, and that he was retiring and going to draw his pension. Oh, and remember the Coleman Caboose?

I act like I'm not sure what he's talking about...boy, am I good!

He says "you know, the motorcycle trailer! I got it painted red!"

Well, wasn't it RED to begin with??????????

Apparently, my memory is off, or the color had faded--it was orange. Hmm..

I asked him how he's going to ride a motorcycle with a bad back!

And he replies "oh I've got all the comforts of home on my NEW motorcycle. It better be, cost me $25,000 and I don't feel a THING riding it--in fact, I just spent $1000 on it yesterday (presumably getting the trailer painted) and I'm going to the Motorcycle Swap Meet tomorrow, and I'll spend another $1000"...and by now you can see my eyes rolling into the back of my head--because he's trying to play up how much money he has (which he hasn't), and what a GREAT CATCH I let slip through my hands....

Uh, yeah. Right. Sure.

He's lucky I didn't puke on his shoes. EVEN HIS STEP FAMILY left the restaurant while this self-aggrandizement and preening was going on. Even they were aware of how thick he was laying down foolish crap.

Ray and I showed him Ray's new drum. He thought that it was "cool", but the look on his face was "hmmfff, not impressed". Well, this doesn't surprise me. Rope tensioned drums was never his "beloved". Those were Ray's drums. Ray's passion.

About that time, Randy decided to leave.

And so did we. Oh, yes, I did manage to tell him that I'd gotten kicked out of Grand Rapids and District Pipe Band. He asked me why, and I told him it was probably something like why he got kicked out of Kalamazoo. Well, right away, he wants to know what I heard. So I told him that it had been decided that he wasn't keeping up technically with the rest of the drumming world (unfortunately, this wouldn't come out exactly how I intended it to come out), and he became royally ticked off and wanted to know who'd told me that, since he said, that he and the Pipe Major had had an argument and that he'd quit that night. Of course, all I could do was look at Ray, who simply shrugged his shoulders. We let Randy leave then.

Of course, this wasn't the real reason why Randy was kicked out, and the real reason is one that I won't repeat here.

After we left the restaurant, Ray and I hashed out the chance "meeting". I find out that his ex-wife and a couple step-kids work there at the restaurant, and frankly, I think that the entire affair was contrived by the ex-wife. Hmm...the plot thickens.

We stopped by the nursing home to see my ex-mother-in-law, who I've talked about previously, and Ray wanted to see her once again before she "kicks off" (my words, not his--he's much more diplomatic than me)--anyway, so we stop.

And I tell her about the chance "meeting" at the McDonald's, and she smiles and says "OH, I'll be getting a phone call tonight!"

But the oddest part, is that when I told her that I told Randy that I knew why he got kicked out of Kalamazoo, she responded with "oh, yeah, there's quite a story about that", as if she knew what Randy had told her, and it wasn't that he QUIT, I'm quite sure.

After that, we drove the rest of the way to my home. We worked a bit on a display that he's doing for the library and for the clan tent for the BlackWatch of the Royal Scottish Regiment, and then Ray went home.

My hubby and I talked about buying another house.

I knitted on my sweater until I couldn't keep my eyes open anymore, and then I went to bed to toss and turn with strange thoughts racing through my head. I promised myself tonight I would definitely take a sleeping pill to quiet the "voices".

Today, hubby and I drove to the house we're thinking of buying--a real fixer-upper, nearly across the street from my favorite LYS! Is it kismet??????

After that, and driving home, I prepped to go to my class, and hubby set up an appointment to get into the house for 5pm. I told him that I would meet him at the house, and just wait for him in town...which saves me a trip.

We met and looked inside the house. It's pretty beat up inside. It's got a few things that I don't like about it. It needs a LOT of work.

After we looked at the house, we went to dinner at Bennigan's. It was pretty funny actually, because that was where Ray wanted to go after the Living History Show, and when the realtor asked where we should go, that was the only place that would come to my mind. She was surprised, because it's one of her favorite places to go, and she asked if I'd ever been there, and I told her that I'd never been there and why it was fairly uppermost in my mind.

We made an offer on the property.

Of course, you know that it's possible that the lein-holder will most likely counter--the house has only been on the market for a short while, BUT it's also a foreclosure and it's unlivable in it's present condition. Frankly, the lein-holder isn't likely to be in the business of holding property, and might snap up the bid, but it's doubtful, and if someone else bids more, we could lose the opportunity, which wouldn't hurt my feelings in the slightest...but wow how many times can I digress in a day?

So, we come home to talk about it, and I knit on my sweater some more. I'm about 10 rows away from putting in the pockets, I figure...maybe 20...but the sweater is coming along. The class today was good, and I learned a lot about designing these sorts of sweaters.

I have a correction to make to the formula for Increases....I left out part of it.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Saturday Morning!

While Barb Cooper writes about her move, I write about my own activities, and lately, it's been a storm of productivity.

Pictures, please!
This is a closeup of the 2 (count em!) sleeves, just finished last night. I am a proud momma! And...they even end on the same row!

Here's the hem for the body (not finished, but only has 4 more rows, and then I can start on the actual fair isle pattern)

And this is another sleeve picture to show you the overall effect.

I think it's spectacular, if I do say so myself (and I do!). I love it love it love it. Beyond that, the fair isle is really fun to do, and because the yarn is worsted weight, it goes so much faster than a sock!

Too bad that I'm going to a trade show today for re-enactors with my friend Ray--or I'd be home knitting, you can be sure of that. I'm on a deadline! My class is tomorrow, and there is just no way that I can get beyond the pockets on the body of the sweater today in time for the class tomorrow. Sigh. With some luck, I'll be home about 4, and can get at least a few rows into the body's fair isle patterning. I can't wait! This doesn't mean that I won't enjoy the trade show, because I always do. I'm taking my camera, so tomorrow I can show you what a re-enactor's trade show is all about! It's actually called the "Living History Show", and really, I can barely contain myself about going. They have all sorts of stuff there, and I'm going to buy a few things---some leather for the soles of my felted Uggs, a couple of pewter thistles, and some other things--I hope that everything goes well.

So I'm going to get off the internet now, so that the phone line is open. Ray is late--and that always worries me.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Sleeve #2 is done!

I started the lower hem of the sweater tonight. No pictures yet, as I'm really trying hard to get the hem done. I'm not sure I'll be able to work on it much tomorrow--since I'm going to the Living History Show in Kalamazoo. But even if I do go, if Ray will drive, then I can knit SOMETHING, and I think that I will take a dishcloth.

In any case, if I do get to knit on the way down and back, that will be about 4 hours of knitting time, which should allow for at least one, if not two dishcloths.

I bought some more yarn today (shame on me!). This is for the reversible hat with double knitting technique. The class is next month, so I'm preparing. I also bought another skein of sock yarn. This stuff is beautiful. Fire colors--yellows, reds oranges and what I can only call "smoke". I like those colors. In fact, I have a couple pieces of batik in those colors, and I am loathe to use it in a quilt, because the color lights a fire in my soul that just won't go out.

Well, Just wanted to give an update and didn't mean to get so wordy. I'm going back to my knitting now!

Addendum to the Increase

All you do is knit your stitch like normal, then go into the back of the stitch as you normally would as if you were going to knit that increase, but instead, just slip it over to the right hand needle.

C'est tout!

Thursday and Friday

I came down with a bug on Thursday afternoon, and went home. The same bug is keeping me from going in today. I don't want eeryone else sick, too. So I'm staying home today.

I have a lot planned for the next 3 days, and I'm hoping that this bug doesn't keep me down all weekend. I'm eating my chicken soup dutifully.

I haven't been blogging much lately, because there's really not much to say--I'm knitting to a deadline--the second class for the fair isle sweater is Sunday, and I've only got the sleeves done. I have to get the body started, and Saturday I won't have time to work on, in between running back and forth from my chair to the porcelain bus, I'll be knitting as much as I can stand.

I had to relight the fire this morning. That really took a lot out of me. I need to drink something, but I only have pop and water, and you're not supposed to drink EITHER when you've got the flu, but I'm feeling pretty dehydrated.

I might be able to convince Ray to drive his car to Kalamazoo on Saturday--which will of course, save me quite a bit of money in the form of gas. We're slated to go to the Living History Show. I hope that I've recovered from this "ick", and it looks like it might be letting up some....or else there's just nothing left in there to be sick WITH. You know what I mean.

But as I said, yesterday, I got quite a bit done on my second sleeve, and I'm going to work hard to get that sleeve done today--just as much as I can stand--to start on the body. So I have to take measurements....since I want this sweater to basically work as my Spring coat (it's going to be a warm one!) I measure with my cloths on--probably best for the neighbors--and also since I want this said "coat" to come down a bit from my hip line, to cover my bum, I find that I am just as big on my hips as I am on my bust, and that's NEVER happened.

Never in my entire life has my bottom and top been the same size.

Now, this isn't saying my body is perfectly proportioned, mind you. Let's not go there. So with my gauge, I need 184 stitches for the bottom ribbing, then increase to 230, based on the gauge I got with the first sleeve. I'm normally a fairly consistent knitter, and I don't expect that gauge will be too much different on the second sleeve, but I will double check that in a minute. So based on my calculation I have to increase 46 stitches.

Ever wonder the formula to figure out how to increase stitches evenly? I never knew how to do that, but I do NOW. Here it is in all it's mathematical glory:

# of stitches you start with MINUS # of increase stitches = # of stitches NET to increase/increases...

So let's plug the #'s and solve for x, shall we?


So I need to increase every 3 stitches--so k3, inc1 across. Lucky for me this particular formula works for me to be an even #. That doesn't usually happen. For instance, let's look at the sleeve--I had to increase from 50 to 72 stitches...a change of 22 stitches

38/22=1.72727272727272 (forever) but really, for simplicity, we'll say 1.7

This answer is difficult, because you can't do 1/7th of a stitch right? This means that you have to do a little more've seen sweaters where you increase one every 3rd stitch, then increase 1 every 4th stitch (or some mixture of that). Well, here's where those calculations are made--right inside this very formula. The way to remember is that when the # on the right of the decimal (.7) is bigger than .5, you increase the # on the left of the decimal (1.) to the next higher # (2) and do that increase 7 times. If it's LESS THAN .5, you add an extra stitch in the second half of the equation (dealt with below) Then, let's look closer at that .7--this is 7/10ths...remember your "fractions"? So the "10" is the # of times you will increase over all. Since you've already got 7 increases, you only need 3 more--so the resulting information gives you this calculations for the knitting:

(k2, inc 1) 7 times (see the 7)
(k1, inc 1) 3 times (because 7+3=10)

So just for shits and giggles, let's try another example:

Let's say the final answer is 2.4--that's 2 and 4 tenths, right?

The 4 tenths isn't bigger than .5, which tells us that the 2nd half of the equation is going to have the higher number of stitches, calculated thus:

(k2, inc 1) 4 times (see the 4)
(k3, inc 1) 6 times (because 6+4=10; notice how the number of stitches increased from 2 to 3 HERE, instead of in the first part of the equation result in example B?)

OR because 4/10ths reduces down to 2/5ths (remember lowest common denominators?)

(k2, inc 1) 2 times
(k3, inc 1) 3 times

Don't ask me why or how this works, but I counted, since I wasn't sure that this fraction stuff was going to work for me (goodness knows it didn't work for me in grade school!). And sure enough, it DOES work. Take my word for it. If you don't believe me, your stitches are right there on your own needles!

Now don't make the mistake of inserting the wrong first number in the equation, or you will really gum up all the works. Ask me how I know.

And, I imagine that it would work with decreasing, too, but haven't tried it, and I don't know if it needs tweaking to come up with the right numbers, but you would probably use the number you want to END UP WITH minus the # of decreases (you know how patterns say "decrease 6 stitches evenly across)...let's try it...

We have 80 stitches OTN, and need to decrease to 60...that's a 20 stitch decrease...

60-20 = 40
40/20 = 2

So if you k2, dec1 across you should come up with 60 stitches at the end.

Don't look at me! I'm not knitting this! If you want to know, TRY IT FOR YOURSELF!

So now, you can design sweaters that fit you. Once you know your gauge, you can figure out how (and where) to make that little extra bulge fit inside (instead of the unsightly "outside") your sweater. :)

Also, instead of a knit into the front and back, for this sweater, I knit into the stitch, then slip it. This keeps from having that ugly ugly purl bump in the mix.

So, I'm going to knit on my sweater now. I've had enough math for one day.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New Project Started

I started a new project at work (for during my breaks and my lunch). I am making the Have a Heart Spa Set from Peaches 'n Creme's website. It's a for purchase pattern, but you can get it free if you buy yarn there. Then you just buy extra yarn so that the shipping evens out, and you're all set.

I think I have it queued up on my Ravelry page, but can't remember. Anyway, the link is here.

What's really cool about it is that you can get it in any color--doesn't have to be the colors specified on the website. I got mine in peach (well, they called it shrimp), and had enough left for another 10 or 11 balls of yarn. I got 4 more in Tea Rose (another peach-y tone, just a bit lighter than Shrimp) and some coordinating colors in ombres! So I'm good to go for, oh, probably years....

For now, tho, watching Stargate SG-1 The Ark of Truth, and now, it's over. Not exactly what I was expecting, and rather "tame" compared to the SG-1 episodes, which I liked very much. I miss the show. I miss Jack O'Neil's character. I'm not really fond of Cameron Mitchell, even if he is something of Jack's character. When he first started, and was using Jack's terminology (such as the phrase "Now, THAT'S what I'm talking about!") I don't know, it just seemed a little irreverent.

I hope the show comes back, but they'll have to find a new "bad guy", unless they bring back the Atlantis crew and slay the Wraith. Somehow, I think that might be a few years off.

Well, I need to go read my instructions on the Philosopher's Wool Fair Isle Sweater. Notice how long that's taking??? I guess I'm really bored with it--even if it is colorwork, it's too much work, for too little payback, I guess. It's all stockinette--nothing there to give a person a bit of a challenge! And knitting with two hands? Piece of cake. So it must be that it's boring me to death that's keeping me from wanting to do it.

I also found another sock pattern that's just calling my name...but I MUST get back to my WIPS.

New mantra....WIPS must be done....Wips must be done...

Monday, March 10, 2008

Socks done!

They are done! They are done!
I'm really happy with them--except that they aren't as tall as I expected they'd be, but the Cross Hatch Lace has lots of give and rib, so it's almost like having ribbing--they're snug around everything.

Friday, March 7, 2008


the weekend is finally here!

Enough of feeling sorry for myself.

I registered at!

And I've been watching Fowler for YEARS waiting for the opportunity for this one particular person to join. He wasn't a boyfriend, although back then I had a crush on him that could have rivaled Scarlet O'Hara's love/hate for Rhett Butler! Oh, yeah, heart-throb city.

None of my friends understood my infatuation with him. In fact, looking back, I think he might have been in direct competition with another boy who had a crush on me--but I can't for the life of me imagine why the most popular boy in school would have wanted ME! That didn't make sense then, and it doesn't now...but I digress in my digression...

So for years, I've been watching, waiting, wondering whatever happened to him, because as stupid as I was in those awkward teenage years, I really embarrassed him, and was waiting for the opportunity to finally apologize for my stupidity...but

Good gracious me! There was his name!
So I quick and register for a gold membership, and fire off an email. I can't believe my luck.

Not only that, but I got notified today that someone had visited my profile page recently. I didn't think anything of it, and if you aren't registered, you can't see who it is that queried you--but after I registered, I looked into it.

And it was my steady boyfriend in 8th grade! Well, steady for about 4 months...(smile, remember how short your earliest loves were?)

My memories of him are all smiles and sweetness. The pressure was intense, though, and when we broke up, I cried. Of course, the hurt gets forgotten after 20-30 years or so (or so and or so), and you look back on this sort of thing fondly.

I checked up on some others from my class, wrote off about a dozen emails, and hope I get some sort of response from at least 2 or 3.

I'm wondering now, though, if any of them are registered, because if they aren't, it's likely not only will they not get my email, but I won't get their's either, since the only way you can email is to be a gold member. So we'll see what happens.

In the meantime, my husband wants to go out to our favorite place up at the corner (McDonald's) for supper. Since I already had McD's at lunch, I'm not so fond of the idea, but, I'm cold and not worried if I get fatter or not.

I took a new picture of me today to put on Classmates...there you go!

Another Dishcloth Done and It's Friday once again

And soon, the boss will let me go and be the real me!

Today's plate has but letters to send out. I may even take off early and go see some of my old quilting buddies that I haven't seen for about two years.

What? Quilting?

Oh, yes, before becoming addicted to washcloths and socks...(see below) I was an avid, rabid quilter. I had every book and magazine made--every updated tool. When we moved, I put everything in boxes, and when we started remodeling, I put it all BACK into the same boxes. My husband hasn't finished the remodel yet, and he promises a new studio offshoot in the garage--something which I have specific requirements, if I can't have the room downstairs....but that's another blog entry.

In any case, I have fabric and books etc up the if I get out of work early today to see my friends, it might be fun to take along my little socks that are coming along well...or perhaps a pattern that I've a plan to do for the bathroom--not for USE in the bathroom--you all know that when you put something pretty in the bathroom, you can't allow your husband to use it for any reason, right? I mean, next thing you know it's being used for a hand towel after they've worked on the car.

Why are men GAUCHE?

The dishcloth above is "the stone rolled away", from the Bible's version of the (what we celebrate as Easter Morning, when Christ rose again from the tomb, and left it empty. The Roman guards were quite upset that they had fallen asleep at their posts, only to find out that their dead inmate had either been taken in the night or gotten up and pushed aside a ton of rock and stone and escaped. Wait...a dead inmate. How's he going to get up and walk out if he's dead?

Well, however you believe it happened, or whatever you believe happened that day, celebrate the holiday well, my friends.

Aren't my socks turning out cool?

Oh one last thing...
I finally broke down and wrote the pipe major of Grand Rapids and District Pipe Band. Honestly, I didn't really feel that I needed to give him the satisfaction of knowing how I feel, but I will post my email to him here, since it's more than likely he didn't read it, and I'd like all of you to know the real story -- from my's the email in it's entirety:

"Since your statement to me when Ray, Norm and I turned in our stuff has been replaying in my head for a day or so recently....

You said to me that it wasn't personal.

If it wasn't personal, then what was it, David? And why are Sam and Jeri so angry with me that Sam wouldn't even call me back about corn stove corn?

Let's face it David. I put a lot of effort into the drum corps and into the band itself. For you to blame me for the lack of "improvement" in the corps, when in fact, it was Shirlyn who was holding us back from doing anything productive is pretty much laughable. Sorry, but that's the way I see it. I did everything I could to bring some life into the drum corps, and I believe that I accomplished that--well over and above what you were hoping for--Not only that, I fed the tenor part to the tenors for a drum salute that Ray and I put together, spent hours and hours putting scores on computer to share with anyone who might come into the band, spent time and effort driving to Grand Rapids to improve my drumming, to learn how to bagpipe, not to mention practices and performances--but your website, the database for the ceilidh, the beater covers for the tenors and base--painting drumsticks with glow in the dark paint for St. Patrick's day--I knit hose for Ray and I, and was PLANNING to make hose for you too (until you let me go). I had the yarn in the car and everything, a color that I thought would be really close to the bottle green you were looking for. I also had a line on another skein online that I was about to order, but ended up not--I marched with you guys in parades for an entire season, and performed at every opportunity. I think I may have missed a couple of practices due to the weather, which is more than I can say for anybody else in the band. I made sure that I never had a conflict with the band so that I could support it 100+%.

I had hopes that you would promote me to Drum Sergeant. I know that Shirlyn and I didn't particularly have any great love for each other, and regardless of how you may feel about her, David, AS DRUM SERGEANT she is bad for the band. She DOES have skills in other areas, and even had you made me DS, there was no way in this world that I was going to let her go or try to force her out. She picks things up fast and she IS a good band manager. She could have remained in her post for those things, and I had no problem with that, as you should be well aware. It had always been my belief that it's important to work hard to maintain the personnel in the band--personality conflict aside--bagpipe bands being something of a dying breed. I even went so far as to drive to Alma to get Ray--so that he could come to practice when he totaled his car. That was a bit much for me, and I let Ray know that he would have to get his vehicle in order because I wouldn't/couldn't do it again.

I am disappointed in your decision. That is God's truth. Given what I've done for the sake of the band and how much I cared about it--and yes, I was "this close" to telling Shirlyn to take a flying leap the next time she put the drum corps down for a new idea--I still find it incredible that you'd circumvent that by sending me packing considering all I've done for the good and for the improvement of OUR BAND.

And yes, I've got a couple of irons in the fire. I don't know if I'm going to pursue them or not, considering that I'm not so sure that I want to involve myself in another situation as I did with Grand Rapids, just to be slapped down and basically informed that my friends and I aren't good enough for you. How you can say "it wasn't personal" is seriously beyond my comprehension, beyond that, why you would even say it--seemed to me that it was just "something to say in an awkward moment" that really didn't ring true to my own ears--never mind the fact that I really didn't want to hear it anyhow. Having been knocked down a time or two in my life, it should come as no surprise that I wouldn't want to continue to relate to the person or persons who once again have betrayed MY trust.

Ray was furious, and Norm was pretty angry too. Both were trying to come up with ideas on how to sabotage you guys on MY behalf, and I told them to just let it go, because I simply didn't have any fight left in me. Ray did some things that I wish he hadn't done, but he'd done them and then told me about it. From that point, there was no stopping him. So IF something happened at the ceilidh--I hope you realize that I had NOTHING to do with it. It was Ray, stepping up to protect my honor, I suppose. I appreciate that, but frankly, my heart bleeds from both directions because I still care. Shame on me for that, but that's how it goes, I guess.

Sorry that I didn't live up to your expectations. I'll miss it, and then again, I won't. There are just some things in life that are best left alone, I suppose, but I'm sure we'll run into one another again, and perhaps say hello. In fact, Ray, Norm and I plan on playing in Alma. So we will likely see you then.


Tenna Sutfin, Drummer, Dedicated, Hard working and True as the Rising Sun.
See ya!"

So there you have it.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Ergonomic Chairs

Our office went through and bought everyone ergonomic chairs. They have nice rollers on them, a high adjustable back, a seat that moves up and down, and the back can be made to stay rigid OR it can be made to relax if you want to lean back and close your eyes, stretch, yawn, snooze and drool...oops, got caught there.

Anyway, the chair is supposed to be the best thing since sliced bread. It even has arm rests. I really do like the chair from an aesthetic standpoint.

But (oh, you knew that was coming didn't you!?)

It doesn't fit me. I can't make it fit me. And the arm rests prevent me from getting up under the desk to type, the seat is "slanted" forward, so I feel like I'm always sitting on the edge of my seat, but still too far from my work to be able to accomplish anything. The back, when rigid is set to low to fit the curve of my lower back, and when in "relax" mode, gives no support whatever--unless I'm sleeping--but frankly, the boss frowns on that. I haven't quite figured that one out yet, but I'm working on it! Ya sure, you betcha--right after this nap!

And no matter how high or low the chair is "set", I wrap my legs around the base of it, which puts stress on my back and gives me a backache. Setting a stool underneath only stresses my back more, and lately, I've been having some really bad backaches.

So we're going to see if we can get around to working out this enigma and I might end up with a new chair.

On another note:
Monthly Dishcloth got their last installment for the March Dishcloth yesterday...and of course, I though there would be at least 2 more days, so I put off yesterday's installment--and didn't do it. A dozen people got theirs done, and mine won't be done until I get home tonight. So I'll have to post the picture tonight. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised.

I pulled the 5 of pentacles reversed--money issues. Hmm. That's everyday, tho!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

The Cost of Christianity-Reloaded

I got a comment on my post about Christianity that I wanted to respond to--the comment didn't surprise me, but I thought that p'raps I wasn't completely clear, so I thought I would add a few notes....

Here is the original comment and my response...

troy said...

I respect your freedom of choice, but that's the problem with religion today. Christianity has become a subject that everyone chooses not to discuss because no one wants to ruffle any feathers.thats why the non believers have a much stronger voice. the small few have taken over and squashed the christian voice, not because they out number us but because we choose not to speak our minds. i urge you to start speaking up, declare your side. everyone has the right to choose what they believe but dont let them squash what you believe or stand for. its time for christians to rise up and control our destiny. troy

Tenna Draper said...

I wanted to respond to Troy's statement, hopefully without losing Troy's readership. Thank you for respecting my freedom of choice--that's very admirable of you, and no I'm not being condescending. The problem with religion today is not that Christians don't want to ruffle anybody else's feathers--the problem with religion today is that it's not practiced. We are not to tell other people how they should believe. God is supposed to bring those to us whom HE has called...not the ones WE want converted by hook or by crook. Christianity is a leadership--not a drug to be sold on the corner. It's not the cure all for what ails society, in fact, it causes more trouble than it fixes--I reiterate "the stone that makes men stumble and the rock that makes them fall". It's a choice that you don't make lightly. But it's your choice and mine. Just because we convert someone doesn't bring us closer to heaven's gate. IN FACT, there is nothing we can do, because we are saved by grace, not by works--so no one can boast (about their accomplishments for "God's side".)

In fact, if we ascribe to and practice what is right, then we ARE controlling our destiny. We're just not controlling each other. Big difference, there IMHO.

And what is right?

It's very simple really.

1/5th of the law. Just one fifth!! Because on that 1/5th of those 10 commands given at Mt. Sinai, we only need to follow 2--as the rest hinge on those two, and only on those two.

Love God.
Love each other.

In practice of these two, you are fulfilling the requirements of the entirety of the Law. Not that you have to do it, you just DO IT, but when you fail, you still have the grace that God extends to us, in that "while we were yet sinners" we can still enjoy the bounty and the blessings which that grace bestows on us.

Given that, there really is no need to stand up and control our destiny. Our destiny is already SEALED. It's a GIMME! We're not loving others if we're beating them over the head with meaningless symbolism that we don't practice in our hearts. The word has to be written on the heart. Only God can do that. Even then, so few seeds find fertile soil.

Blogger Doh!

Is that trademarked? (I mean "doh!")

I woke up this morning with a tremendous backache and a headache on top of that--so I slept in for a while, laying on an ice pack--hoping to alleviate some of the spasms in my back, and the resulting inflammation of my muscles. I still arrived at the office at 8, and I worked hard to catch up on the lost hour. Little did I know, that I was going to work an hour later than I normally do--so in fact, I didn't lose any time at all!

I worked several more rows on my socks (picture follows).

I got an email from my friend Ray.

Here's where the Grand Rapids and District Pipe Band can listen in--

Especially you, Jeri.

Since, if you guys were denied drummers at the Flint Ceilidh, you should know that was not my doing.

Ted called me the evening of the ceilidh, after having received a letter from my friend Ray--asking why I'd been dismissed. I answered that all I had to go by was what the pipe major had put in his letter of dismissal to me, but that it didn't make a whole lot of sense since he never made me drum sergeant--but that had the drum sergeant put the snare corps down again, that we would have quit on the spot, tired of being told that we couldn't do something new out of concern for "confusing" someone else. I told him that I believed the charges were pretty bogus, and that Ray had told me that Flint was asking us to come down and had been for years. He then asked me if I was coming to the ceilidh, and I told him that after Grand Rapids dismissed me, that I'd made other plans, and that I was presently playing "Cut-throat Canasta" cards with my husband and his family. He asked me if I would be having more fun playing cards with my in laws instead of playing drums in a pipe band, and I told Ted that if it came down to that choice, given what had been done to me, I would choose cards with the in laws every question.

He asked me again to come to the ceilidh, and I let him know that while regrettable, there was just no way that I could do it. I still hadn't gotten to the part about Ray's car being totaled the week before, and I think that he was still sure that I would drop everything and head out on his invitation, even while he was hanging up.

It was a nice phone call. It made me feel pretty good about myself.

But there was no discussion about drums, or who could or couldn't play or anything of the sort.

So IF you are angry with ME for not having drums at the ceilidh, your anger is misplaced.

Back to the email from Ray:
Within was notification of a phone call from Flint's Instructor, once again asking us to come out, wondering why we hadn't shown up (weather has just not cooperated!) yet, and why he hadn't called Ray about it all yet, but that absolutely, he was still interested in us coming to Flint to play.

Not only that, but to play in the massed bands at Alma.

And, I would be willing to bet, to serve as extras for competition.


(please note the thumbing of the nose)

Take that "it's nothing personal".

I'm still not sure which way I want to go, but the fact that my skill and experience is still in demand gives my soul a sense of solace and peace that many people never come to realize. So thanks, Ted, for boosting my ego and telling me in so many words that I'm still a valuable person and a hot commodity (somehow, I even feel like I look good in a kilt!)

And as for Grand Rapids? So sorry you didn't live up to MY expectations. I had some grand ideas that never went anywhere because of your drum sergeant. Ray had twice the ideas that I had--had you made one of us drum sergeant, neither of us would have booted any of your personnel--because everyone was valuable--all the bodies that you could get!

I close with the statement "THERE IS NO *I* IN "TEAM"."

Remember that the next time you decide you're going to boot somebody else.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Another Monday

Why do Monday's follow a perfectly good Sunday?

I'm exhausted. I actually held down two jobs today--no wonder I'm exhausted. Tonight was to be spin night, but it was canceled--something about this winter storm that was coming--the temps outdoors are dropping normally--there is no rain, no sleet no snow. I think it may miss us.

I got past the heels on my red/yellow/black socks. I can't even look at them tonight though. I think I'm just too pooped to get up the energy to knit. Plus my eyes are crossed because right now, I'm in the black, and we all know how wonderful it is to knit with black. I've got an ott light, too, and I still have trouble!

More information from Ray about the Grand Rapids pipe band. I honestly think maybe this dismissal hit him harder than it did me! I've asked him to stop talking about it. I don't want to think about it anymore. I told him so in my last email. I hope that will be the end of it.

I did my 10 rows on my monthly dishcloth. I know what this one 'is', so I won't post the progress until it's done. A few more days, and it will be finished.

I'm going to watch an hour of WWE tonight, then I'm going to watch Medium. Then I'm off to bed.

Tonight, I drew the 6 of swords. Entitled Solace, it tells me that soon the frantic-ness following my dismissal will soon end, and I can have some peace about the matter. It's wearing me down, and making me angry. The swords mean that I have to cut the whole business out of my mind. It's difficult when your friend keeps bringing it up to you and everyone else. I just want it to be over.

I'll see you tomorrow.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

The Cost of Christianity

I haven't blogged about this subject because it causes a lot of consternation and argument--mostly because it's such a personal thing, but I felt I needed to say SOMETHING, if only to try to smooth over ruffled feathers that happen here or there.

I this offends you personally, you can choose to not read it--but please don't get into my face about it. I don't go to your blog and get into your face about your personal beliefs, and I consider this my own venue to rant on things that concern me. This subject is one of the things that concern me personally. It has nothing to do with you or how you might believe.

It does, however, deal with the individual response when the word "Christ" is brought into the picture.

Allow me to expound why this issue has "come up" in my life.

One of the groups I subscribe to on Yahoo knits a dishcloth twice a month. The dishcloths are themed sometimes to either the holiday in that month which the list owner observes, or is seasonally themed. She has that right. She owns the list. She may run it any way she wishes. This month, she is doing a dishcloth that has a Christian Theme, in honor of her beliefs and her holidays that she observes. She is not obligated to create a dishcloth to honor holidays which she does not observe--she is not obligated to create a dishcloth AT ALL. It's her list, she may run it how she chooses. Like it or lump it, as they used to say when I was in high school (believe me, a LONG time ago!).

But for someone to expect her to come up with a dishcloth honoring atheism, hedonism, satanism, agnosticism, Muslim, Jewish or whatever you might be personally is tough rocks for you. If you want dishcloths that are Muslim themed, and object to making a dishcloth that is Christian themed, then either make another cloth from some other list, or create your own list for the "group" that you prefer. Don't clog the list with argument and hard feelings--suggestions are always welcome to cater to the variety of people on the list, but the list owner has the final say, and that's that.

Let me add here, that when the "Darwin Fish" became a topic on the list, I recognized it for what it was. Some folks did not, however, I didn't get into your face about how that suggestion was objectionable to MY belief system. A couple of people asked what it was, and I told them since they asked. Soon, the topic died and things smoothed out. You were not banned from the list because you were an atheist or because you brought your belief system with you. You were accepted into the group and you have benefited from the patterns that have been offered so far--bottom line, grin and bear it.

Frankly, IF the list owner decided that she wanted to do a Darwin Fish themed cloth--I would probably choose to NOT do it. Not because it's offensive to my belief, but because I wouldn't want someone else to come into my house to find it. If atheism were my belief system, I think it would make a good conversation starter, for instance, it would make for some really hot topic at a party--otherwise, it would be "just a dishcloth" in my kitchen drawer. But I don't believe "that way". However, if the list owner decided that this month she created a Muslim cloth, I would probably make that--I don't necessarily subscribe to the Muslim faith, but again, it's not offensive to me any more than a Darwin Fish is. The issue is not so much Christianity versus Atheism, but FAITH versus NO FAITH AT ALL.

Don't get me wrong, I am not slamming you for being an atheist or whatever else you chose to be. I only mentioned a couple of belief systems to try to keep this as short as possible. I don't appreciate you getting in my face to argue your point, any more than you like me getting in your face to argue mine. So let's just call the whole thing off? Let's both try to be bigger than we are--and accept our differences as well as our opinions (which can be valuable only to ourselves)--and just get along with each other and PLAY NICE!

That's what I believe Christianity should be--Playing nice with others. What good does it do to try to reason something out with another person if the other person is not willing to be reasonable? Faith (or no faith) is very like that. It's a personal choice. If you have chosen something based on your belief--who am I to attack that? I am nobody to you. I don't have this "need" to tell you what I am--if you're curious, I'll tell you, but from there, I'm not about to shove anything up your nose, down your throat, in your face--I'm just not that kind of person. I like to think I am a kind, reasonable human being. I have feelings, and I get hurt and angry with people sometimes. That doesn't give me the right to attack somebody, no matter how much I might want to beat you over the head. (grinning)

Not that it has anything to do with it, but you won't see me fly a plane with hundreds of innocent people in it into a building just to prove a point, either. I'm just not made of that sort of stuff, and anybody who is needs their heads examined. September 11 (or 9/11) will forever be a remembered date--not because we understand, but because it was an attack on American soil--we'll remember it the same way we remember Christmas or Easter or our birthday--but not with happy celebration. Frankly, I don't really believe that 9/11 was based on any "religious" fervor--in fact, I don't think it had anything to do with religion at all, regardless of what the media tells us. The fact is those buildings came down just as if there was a professional demolition team working there. So as you can see, I have my doubts.

But the cost of Christianity is high, and the higher your religious fervor, the higher the cost. But really, it is no matter which "religion" (or no religion) you ascribe to, as with any personal choice, you're going to clash somehow with someone--somewhere. There are Christians who disagree with what I believe, and say that I "hide my candle under a basket". Perhaps I do. Does that make me less than what I am? Do I really have to turn into a religious nut to be a human being? Would my God (or higher power or whatever) think less of me for it. I think not.

So, if you have a God, or even if you are your own god, do your part to play nice with others and honor the God (or god) you follow by doing so. Otherwise, you're just spinning your wheels and convincing no one.

Just my own $0.04 (inflation you know?).